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Author Topic: How to regain the motivation to go on?  (Read 5132 times)
NJT5047
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« Reply #15 on: July 25, 2006, 08:20:38 PM »

My bus project is so far behind schedule that I'm finding no motivation to go out and work on it. I get depressed seeing how far behind I am.


Brian,  I see your problem....using the word "Schedule" is a big mistake.  You're not "behind"...you only think you're behind.  You may not realize it, but you might be ahead??  You got a lot done already...especially with the engine/heating/bus work that's been done. 
Make a small, easily modified list of things that are absolutely necessary to get the coach completed enough to safely drive and "steel tent" in.   And stick with those.  Starting all sorts of major modifications such as the flooring and skinning the sides at once is overwhelming.  Most converters that do those sorts of things have helpers (often employees??), or farm it.   And then there are those fortunate few that are retired and can work full-time on their buses.    I farmed my caps, AC frames, and skinning sides.   
I spent 3 years working on an easy conversion before spending the first night in it.   I wasn't even sure it'd still get around the block without something failing...but, it did...and has been a pleasure to use the last two years.   I've been converting away for five years, still isn't finished, but totally useable.  I'll get too it one day! 
As for hauling items, get one of the small 6X10' cheapo mesh floored trailers that every one sells for $400 bucks...Tractor Supply, Northern Tools, etc.  Any car or whatever will pull one...then all you need is rain free weather to move all the material you wish...by yourself.  Don't buy a 4X8' trailer...plywood will be damaged on the ends when transporting.
Gotta view these bus things as more a "habit"...a bad habit, but a habit.  The only rule is to move as far as you can on whatever you're working on, make a list of what additional materials are needed, and get'em, or keep the list and work on something else.  Then smaller projects will get completed in an efficient manner.  More "planning," no "scheduling"...cannot schedule a bus conversion anyway.  After you've done a couple maybe, but not the first conversion effort.   
Just don't want to get too many major items going at once.  Another thing, be sure that whatever major mods you make are needed...lots of things will work just fine as they are.  If you're a perfectionist...well, hope you're not. 
Planning is good...scheduling is BAD....plan, but don't put a time-line on the project.  Unmet time lines cause great depression.     
As the bite-sized projects get completed, you'll find your enthusiasm will increase.  I garuntee! 
You got a much nicer shell than most of us...big ol motor...man, I got bus envy again!  I remember when you bought the coach...interesting ride back home!
Good Luck,  JR
Now get back to work!  Wink
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others.”

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Ace
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« Reply #16 on: July 25, 2006, 08:48:07 PM »

Brian, I too have had some down time lately due to un-forseen circumstances in my life and it has kept my mind a little fuzzy most of the time. I'm not discouraged about my bus. I just can't seem to get motivated anymore. It's a long sad story!

Anyway, if your anywhere near Central Florida maybe I could lend you a hand to get going on some small projects and that would help me to get motivated once again. Kind of like helping each other, you might say!

Sometimes when I visit an RV dealer and look at the new coaches,  I get jealous and hurry  right back home and start working on mine again. Maybe I need to practice what I preach pretty soon but my offer still stands. I would be willing to help you on some stuff if your near by. Not looking for anything in return. Just looking for a change of pace, I guess!

Ace
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boogiethecat
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« Reply #17 on: July 25, 2006, 09:45:58 PM »

Ants.  The 'lil peckers move mountains, one grain of sand at a time.  Though I hate them in my kitchen, I marvel at how they work.
And I model my bus work after them.  One grain of sand at a time...

So I made a promise with myself that every day I take a walk to the bus and do at least ONE thing.  It doesn't matter if it's big or little... some days I only pick up a piece of junk off the floor and toss it in the trash... other days I get into it seriously and hours later find that a BIG project is now done.  But the key, at least with me, is at least one thing every day.
Most of the time my intention is to only do one little thing, and I find myself getting in to it, and by the end of the day a lot's been done.  That's the beauty of it, just start and the rest will take care of itself.

ANTS, yup they definitely got something right....

Smiley
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Gary LaBombard
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« Reply #18 on: July 26, 2006, 03:52:48 AM »

See what I told you in my previous post Brian, there is many of the regulars on this bb'd that are concerned about raising your moral to continue and that they too have been where you are.  Do one project complete at at time, remember also, I have sat in my bus maybe 20 times in 4 years, just to sit in the driver seat and I found stuff I want to change, so I don't do that anymore.  But I have no intention to give up unless my health slips away.

Hang in there buddy, you brought a lot of memeories back to us also but now lets continue on and make what you are going through just that, a memory to pass on to another newbie like 17 of us that posted so far to help you out.

Good luck, send me your address, I will send you proof of what I have done in 4 years, FREE, just to help you see what a bad situation can really make you feel like, but now my buses name, (Rustless Money Pit)  just rings a bell to all when I post here and not many really know my name but they do my bus.  The CD I will send will have 4 years of just being on your hands and knees most of that time replacing framing.  Talk about overwhelmed!!!  Been there buddy.  Send address to (busconverter101@aol.com).

Good Luck Brian,
Gary 
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Gary
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« Reply #19 on: July 26, 2006, 07:45:33 AM »

If you haven't already done it, make a list of things you want to do and put it in the order you want it done it.  Then look only at one thing at a time, and cross it off.  I thought I could be camping in 9 months and it took 3.25 years.  Things like wives, kids, and a full time job get in the way of doing all that work.  Plus the time it takes to figure everything out, get the materials, and clean up take up more than 50% of your time.  You're not a factory where all the parts are sitting there and they all fit the first time. 
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« Reply #20 on: July 26, 2006, 08:19:53 AM »

While doing stuff here in Florida where it never cools down it seems I found the best way
to work. Cheesy at best and looks like crap but it works.

Stick the roof airs on, run some romex and hold it up with bungee cords.
Tape or drape some plastic over the open sides. Plug in a 20 inch window fan
to move the air around.

The best Tarps that I have found that hold up and work to reflect heat away are the silver
ones. They are silver on one side and black on the other. Just put the silver side out.

If you already have some sheet foam like R-Max you can sacrifice a sheet or two to make
plugs to keep the heat out and the cool in.

I noticed that you have no trailer, truck or utility vehicle.... Baaaad Boy....

I found a trailer frame and made it usable on my first conversion. Small trailer hitch and
a dodge caravan to tow it. A trailer is an essential tool. Find a cheap one at least 4X8 or so
no matter whether it's a flatbed or whatever. You will need it and it will come in very handy.

I even bought a 35 foot FLX metro transit bus that ran and used it as a mobile workshop, parts hauler
,trailer puller, truck, storage and all that stuff. Just ripped the seats out and loaded it up. The neat part
was that the 35 foot takes up two parking spaces. I went lots of places for parts and supplies. The nice
part is that you don't have to unload it until you are using the materials on the other bus project.

It was great for going and picking up those 24 foot lengths of steel tube and plywood
and when I was done with it I sold it at a profit after using it for 2 years. I even attended
a couple of rallies in it by adding a porta-pottie, portable stove, fridge and some furniture.

Don't be discouraged... Slap some stuff on the sides and get on the road. The only person that matters
is you. My MC9 still looks like junk both inside and outside, But its functional junk. The pretty stuff I figure
will happen someday and I am not going to kill myself worrying over it. ( Too HOT for that !! )

Dave.....
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belfert
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« Reply #21 on: July 26, 2006, 08:59:37 AM »

I noticed that you have no trailer, truck or utility vehicle.... Baaaad Boy....

I have a real nice trailer, just nothing to tow it with until the bus is driveable again.  A VW Golf can only tow 1,500 lbs max and I'm not going to put a hitch on it anyhow.

Once the bus is enclosed and driveable again, I can either take it to the store or use it to tow the trailer to the store. 

Brian Elfert
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DavidInWilmNC
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« Reply #22 on: July 26, 2006, 09:52:29 AM »

Brian,

I don't mean to sound harsh, but it sounds like you're making things hard on yourself.  You're going to pretty much HAVE to have a way to transport materials.  Using the bus isn't all that practical, as you'll often have it in a situation where you'd prefer to not have to drive it.  Having to secure everything inside so you can get materials will take lots of extra time.  Maybe you can pick up a cheap van or larger car (or an old gas hog station wagon) to carry stuff and/or tow the trailer.  Another option is to find a friend with a truck or a hitch on a car.   Wink

I know what you mean about motivation though.  I had to install an A/C last year so I could work on my MC-8.  It wore me out just getting the tools ready to work on it.  It was SO hot inside... at least once it was 106. I opened windows, put in big fans, put a fan on the roof over the hatch to suck out heat, etc which cooled it down to about 95.  That one Carrier 15k HP works hard to cool it down when it's that hot, but it will in a couple of hours.  That made it a lot more enjoyable to work on.  Going along with what the others have said, use it.  I haven't driven mine since I bought it, but we do hang out in it a lot.  I have a satellite radio receiver in it, my wi-fi signal is ok in there so I can use my notebook, and the small 'fridge is full of water, soft drinks, and beer.  A few folding chairs provide seating.  The point is, it is enjoyable now.  Friends will often come over to visit. Many times, they'll get interested in some aspect of it and want to help out a bit, which is great. 

When I get overwhelmed with the bus, I'll go out and clean and organize it.  I used to stress a lot about how long it's taking and that I missed a 'deadline' of Memorial Day.  That's the wrong way to think about it.  I bought it to enjoy.  I'd rather be enjoying it on the road, but that's not an option quite yet.  If it gets to the point of making one stressed, that's sort of defeating the purpose!  Good luck with it.

David
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Brian Diehl
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« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2006, 10:10:54 AM »

Brian,
Remember this is supposed to be a hobby, something you enjoy doing in your spare time.  I've personally burnt myself out on my project in the past and had to take a couple of months off.  I allow myself to take time off from the project because I eventually end up with the desire to work on it.  Once that happens it is enjoyable again.  Sometimes you have to force yourself to complete a project so you can use the bus, but don't forget to keep in mind the point that the experience is supposed to be fun.  As others have said, take a few moments to figure out what *MUST* be done and then get it done.  Once that is done take a break and you will find in time you will want to get back on the project and it will be fun again.
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Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #24 on: July 26, 2006, 10:19:48 AM »

I have 6 to 8 guys planning on this trip. Brian Elfert
Brian get these guys to pitch in and help! Why should you be out $ 60,000 and all the labor if these guys are going to enjoy the use of it too! The least they can do is pitch in and just be holders and gofers, if nothing else after all yer the one who's dumping a fortune of cash into a BUS for the convience of all ! I say if they aren't willing to help get some basic stuff that's needed done screw 'em rent ya a van and go it alone on this special trip and then get back to work on her when you get home! If they want to reap the rewards they need to at least be willing to sacarfice some blod sweat and beers for the project as you've already took up the task of providing everything else! I don't mean to sound harsh but stop and look back from the day you started researching this project til today how much support, help, $, or any other contributions have any of the others made toward this goal of making this a reality for all to enjoy? Why should you be the only one who does it all ? If these guys are really friends, and care at all they'll find a way to work it into their schedule to help out someway or another, even if it's only to be there and hand you tools, materials or just a cold beer at the right moment! Just my 2 cents worth! BK  Grin
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belfert
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« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2006, 10:32:29 AM »

Brian,
Remember this is supposed to be a hobby, something you enjoy doing in your spare time.  I've personally burnt myself out on my project in the past and had to take a couple of months off.  I allow myself to take time off from the project because I eventually end up with the desire to work on it. 

I never intended this to be a hobby.  I needed a replacement RV that met my needs.  No off the lot class A has enough bunks and is built the way I want it.  I should have bought the Class C on a truck chassis that I saw this winter instead of the bus, but I thought the bus would be less money.  The class C was a 2004 with a 450 HP motorhome and an auto tranny, plus it had bunks instead of a bedroom.  

I just way underestimated how long things would take.  The mechanical stuff took an extra month because parts are hard to get for a Dina.

I only have two months to get the sides paneled, windows installed, A/C and generator installed, plus a working toilet.  I figure paneling the sides will take a month at the rate things are going.

Brian Elfert
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belfert
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« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2006, 10:45:43 AM »

I have 6 to 8 guys planning on this trip. Brian Elfert
Brian get these guys to pitch in and help! Why should you be out $ 60,000 and all the labor if these guys are going to enjoy the use of it too! The least they can do is pitch in and just be holders and gofers, if nothing else after all yer the one who's dumping a fortune of cash into a BUS for the

One guy has helped me a great deal, but now he has a new job and works weekends.  Most of the rest of my friends live 250 miles away so they can't help with today's fuel prices and such.  (On trips, they get picked up along the way.)

My one friend initially wanted to do a old junker school bus, but it turned out that he couldn't afford even that.  I didn't want to put time and money into an old junker that might not make it 4,000 miles.

Brian Elfert
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mdainsd
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« Reply #27 on: July 26, 2006, 11:34:58 AM »

This forum should be manadatory reading for anyone contemplating doing a conversion.
I've been itching to do one for years, and thought I was ready. I have the room, I have most of the abilities and I have a shop on my premesis (wood and metal woorking).
After reading the posts here however, I am rethinking the whole thing. I see that the "motivation" is a recurring threme. I already work two jobs and am remodelling my house.
I am now going to shift gears, so to speak, and look for a finished conversion, extra money no doubt, but more realistic in my case.
A thought for you guys as to the "service vehicle". I bought a military surplus 6X6, they have a telve foot bed, will haul a ton (actually 5 tons over the road), use it to jump 24V systems, even move/tow a bus short distances, and the best part was I got it for just over 400 bucks and drove it home.

an example perhaps...

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1982-MCI-9-Bus-Conversion_W0QQitemZ190010800723QQihZ009QQcategoryZ6728QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
« Last Edit: July 26, 2006, 12:06:05 PM by mdainsd » Logged

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« Reply #28 on: July 26, 2006, 12:06:18 PM »

I really wonder how many more of you there are out there.
I have been following the boards for several years and a lot of members have just dropped out of sight. We know they were not finished with their conversion but they just quit posting. I strongly suspect that they just gave up but were unable to come on the board and admit that they were quitting or were just burnt out on the project or it was too big or whatever the reason. It would be extremely difficult to do.
Richard


Brian,
Remember this is supposed to be a hobby, something you enjoy doing in your spare time.  I've personally burnt myself out on my project in the past and had to take a couple of months off.  I allow myself to take time off from the project because I eventually end up with the desire to work on it. 

I never intended this to be a hobby.  I needed a replacement RV that met my needs.  No off the lot class A has enough bunks and is built the way I want it.  I should have bought the Class C on a truck chassis that I saw this winter instead of the bus, but I thought the bus would be less money.  The class C was a 2004 with a 450 HP motorhome and an auto tranny, plus it had bunks instead of a bedroom.  

I just way underestimated how long things would take.  The mechanical stuff took an extra month because parts are hard to get for a Dina.

I only have two months to get the sides paneled, windows installed, A/C and generator installed, plus a working toilet.  I figure paneling the sides will take a month at the rate things are going.

Brian Elfert
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« Reply #29 on: July 26, 2006, 02:12:14 PM »

When I bought my GM 4106, I thought I would have it done, and ready to go in a matter of months. The Wife and I planned to complete the project in 5 years, to have it TOTALY finished.     There have been many setbacks, and now I have had the bus for 10 years, and we are still working on it.
When we bought it, we thought we could start on the conversion, and that would be the end. HA !!!
We worked on it for 2 years, and than I just stoped.  Lost interest, I guess.  Than I changed jobs, and concentrating on the job, I didn't have time to give to the bus.   By now, I had found a rod was bent, in the engine, so I felt it was time to do an in frame overhaul. After getting the engine torn down, I never touched it for 5 years.    I never gave up.    Now 10 years later, the bus is about 3/4 done, and now we have another set back.  I got run over by a farm tractor, and now have a hard time walking, so we had to move from our home, in Florida, to Mizzery, I mean Missouri.  ( Please don't ask why).
I can still drive it, so we are in the process of finishing. It will never be finished, But, I will use it. and we WILL have fun.   I will not give up.  It is kind of a joke in our family.
Don't give up, just put it on the back burner for a while, than go back stronger than you were.
This is not a job for a wimp !!!!!!
My 2 cents
Steve Grin
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